for this game

Sheets, Fielder help keep Brewers rolling

Jun 1, 2008 - 3:18 AM By JR Radcliffe PA SportsTicker Contributing Writer

MILWAUKEE (Ticker) -- Ben Sheets finished one out shy of tossing his third complete game of the season, and Prince Fielder blasted a two-run homer in the fifth inning to lead the Milwaukee Brewers to a 4-1 victory over the Houston Astros on Saturday.

Russell Branyan also homered and Ryan Braun added an RBI single for the Brewers, who have won five of their last six contests.

Darin Erstad had a pair of hits and drove in a run for the Astros, who have lost four consecutive games.

Sheets (6-1) allowed just one run on seven hits and one walk with five strikeouts. After throwing 122 pitches over 8 2/3 frames, Salomon Torres retired the final batter to collect his fifth save of the season.

"He wanted to finish that game," Brewers manager Ned Yost said of Sheets. "Benny is one of the few guys that when he steps foot on that mound, he expects to go nine. Sometimes I need to make tough decisions for him, and this was one of them."

Fielder's towering two-run shot in the fifth broke a 1-1 tie against Houston starter Brian Moehler (2-2), just one batter after Braun's RBI single evened the game.

"Anytime I'm able to produce, it's good," said Fielder, who has now homered in back-to-back games. "Anytime anybody's able to cross the plate when I'm hitting, whether it be me or anybody else, that's what I'm striving for."

Branyan's solo home run in the sixth off reliever Oscar Villareal traveled 465 feet, tying his own mark for the third-longest home run in Miller Park history. Branyan also has the longest home run in Miller Park - a 480-foot blast in 2004.

"I'd like to hit more often up here," Branyan said. "Eventually, I'll start to settle in and make better contact. I'm a little disappointed in the way I've been swinging and missing. On the flip side it's nice to go out there tonight and capitalize on a mistake that the pitcher made and get the barrel on the ball. It definitely feels nice."

Sheets took care of the rest, retiring seven straight following Carlos Lee's infield single in the seventh before an 11-pitch walk to Lance Berkman ended his night.

"Pitch counts have got a lot to do with today's game," Sheets said. "I thought I could have finished it. I had a long at-bat with probably one of the hottest hitters in baseball. I didn't feel like I had lost anything. But they're uncomfortable with the pitch count getting up there, that's fine."

Erstad's RBI single in the third spotted the Astros a 1-0 lead, but Erstad was thrown out by Jason Kendall trying to steal second base. Kendall threw out a career-high three runners on the night.

"I thought (Sheets) held runners very good," Kendall said. "He threw a good game and we got some key hits. (The starters) have all done a good job. The bottom line is that you have to focus on the hitter and make pitches."

Sheets' outing marked the fifth straight quality start for a Brewers pitcher. The team staff has a 2.68 ERA in that span.

Moehler lasted five innings, surrendering three runs and six hits with a walk and six strikeouts.

Ty Wigginton had two hits and scored a run for the Astros, who will try to avoid the sweep on Sunday.

"He's definitely one of the tougher guys," Wigginton said of Sheets. "He's not a guy you're comfortable with. When you come to the yard, you're not excited to get four AB's against him. He can make you look horrible with any given at-bat.

"His breaking ball - it looked like he was throwing some kind of changeup. We still don't know what it is. It was a changeup (that) had split action. It was good. His fastball was moving all over the place tonight."








  • NL
    FINAL
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 R H E
    - - - - - - - - - - - -
    HOUSTON 0 0 1 0 0 0 0 0 0 1 7 0
    MILWAUKEE 0 0 0 0 3 1 0 0 x 4 8 0 (FINAL)

    BATTERIES: HOU - BRIAN MOEHLER, OSCAR VILLARREAL (6TH), DOUG BROCAIL (7TH),
    JOSE VALVERDE (8TH) AND BRAD AUSMUS
    MIL - BEN SHEETS, SALOMON TORRES (9TH) AND JASON
    KENDALL

    HOM

    May 31 9:32 PM


  • NL
    AT MILWAUKEE - SCORING UPDATE
    SOLO HOME RUN BY RUSSELL BRANYAN (2) TO RIGHT WITH 0 OUT IN
    THE 6TH OFF OSCAR VILLARREAL.
    CURRENT SCORE: HOUSTON 1, MILWAUKEE 4
    DUE UP FOR MILWAUKEE: J HARDY (.251, 0-FOR-2)

    Astros 1, Brewers 4  Bot 6, 0 OutsMay 31 8:51 PM


  • NL
    AT MILWAUKEE - SCORING UPDATE
    TWO-RUN HOME RUN BY PRINCE FIELDER (8) TO RIGHT WITH 2 OUT
    IN THE 5TH OFF BRIAN MOEHLER SCORED RYAN BRAUN.
    CURRENT SCORE: HOUSTON 1, MILWAUKEE 3
    DUE UP FOR MILWAUKEE: C HART (.298, 1-FOR-2)

    Astros 1, Brewers 3  Bot 5, 0 OutsMay 31 8:37 PM


  • NL
    AT MILWAUKEE - SCORING UPDATE
    SINGLE BY RYAN BRAUN SCORED RICKIE WEEKS.
    SITUATION: 1 RUN IN, R BRAUN ON FIRST, 2 OUT
    CURRENT SCORE: HOUSTON 1
    MILWAUKEE 1 BOTTOM, 5TH
    DUE UP FOR MILWAUKEE: P FIELDER (.271, 0-FOR-1, HBP)

    Astros 1, Brewers 1  Bot 5, 0 OutsMay 31 8:33 PM


  • NL
    AT MILWAUKEE - SCORING UPDATE
    SINGLE BY DARIN ERSTAD SCORED TY WIGGINTON.
    SITUATION: 1 RUN IN, D ERSTAD ON FIRST, 2 OUT
    CURRENT SCORE: HOUSTON 1
    MILWAUKEE 0 TOP, 3RD
    DUE UP FOR HOUSTON: K MATSUI (.258, 0-FOR-1)

    Astros 1, Brewers 0  Top 3, 0 OutsMay 31 7:48 PM
  • 5
    roots
    Pasta2000 Added 5 roots

    Astros vs. BrewersApr 10 2:26 PM